Archive | July, 2014

Eliminate Emotional Eating Habits

26 Jul

stress_cereal_breakfast

Let’s face it, healthy eating is easy to do when you’re organized, well rested, and being appreciated for your brilliance and hard work, right? But what about when you’re approaching a deadline at work, midterm exam or finals are next week, or the kids are sick, the house is a mess and your parents will be visiting the next day. Suddenly you realize your pants have somehow shrunk! In short, many people turn to food to comfort them.

Food cravings can be a sign of emotional stress and often times we feel worse. Have you noticed when you are hungry emotionally and you try to satisfy it with a particular food and it doesn’t work. This is because food is not an effective way to nourish emotional needs. To overcome emotional eating we need to develop new coping tools to positively influence our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Here are some ideas.

  • First, distinguish between true hunger and emotional craving. With true hunger you will eat anything. Emotional hunger is usually craving a certain food, often high in fat and sugar. If it’s physical hunger, be sure to eat!
  • Practice listening to your thoughts and feelings to become aware of your motivation for eating. Also listen for what hidden beliefs you have about yourself (I’m weak, I’ll never be able to do this…). Pay attention to how you feel before and after eating certain foods. Ask yourself, “what is this food feeding?”
  • Take some time to identify triggers. Do you drive by a bakery on your way to work that serves your favorite treat? Recognize when you are eating because you are tired, bored, sad, etc. If you don’t know why you are triggered to eat, try journaling. When you feel triggered, write down what things happened prior to that feeling. You may eventually see a trend. Knowing your triggers allows you to cope with the feelings and emotions of the situation better.
  • Next, write down your reactions to the trigger. What food did you eat and how much? Then come up with at least 3 alternatives to respond to the triggers in a health promoting manner. Examples are exercising, calling a friend, going for a walk, meditating, etc. Keep this list with you. When we are stressed we may not be able to remember these self-nurturing alternatives. Even if you don’t think they are going to work, make a commitment to try them out before you decide to eat.
  • Instead of focusing on limitation or restriction, focus your attention on gratitude for what you do have.
  • When you overcome your barrier, celebrate! When you make a good decision pay attention to how good you feel.

food_health

 

Breaking Bad Habits: Your Sugar Intake!

19 Jul

cake_dessert copy

Being more aware and lowering your daily sugar intake can be very tricky. Here are a few helpful hints to lower your sugar intake!!

Cook at home: Preparing your own food is the easiest way to monitor how much sugar you are consuming.
Re-think your daily beverages: Make your own flavored waters vs. buying prepackaged “flavored waters” loaded with artificial sweeteners, flavorings, coloring and additives. Marketers trick consumers into thinking they are drinking healthy beverages. Also, next time you are ordering your morning coffee watch out for tempting sugary flavors and add ons like caramel sauce. Try ordering your coffee black with a splash of milk, and top it off with cinnamon at the self serve station.

Track what you are consuming using your favorite fitness APP (My fitness pal, fitbit, etc): Apps allow you to input your daily food and beverage intake and show you how much sugar you are consuming every day. Even though 6 grams of sugar in your morning oatmeal may not seem like a lot, sugar adds up quickly!
Avoid sugar free products: Even though sugar free may sound like the healthy option, you have you to be aware of what is being added to replace the sugar. Sugar free products are typically loaded with artificial sweeteners and additives and sometimes can cause a laxative effect for consumers.

Wake Up And Set The Tone For Your Day!

12 Jul

breakfast_granola

Your first waking hour will impact your entire day.

Making healthy choices for breakfast can help you make healthier choices all day long, because what you eat for breakfast tells your body what to expect for the rest of the day. Set a positive tone by jump starting your day with a healthy, well-balanced breakfast.

Try these healthy breakfast recipes! 

Carrot Cake Oatmeal

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup milk of choice — HAWA loves unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, applesauce or pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup grated carrots
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2-1 tbs cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup sweetener of your choice
  • 1 1/4 cup old fashioned oats or steel cut oats
  • 1/4 cup vanilla protein powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, walnuts or almonds

Directions:

  • Mix all of your ingredients together in a medium size bowl
  • Divide the mixture between two small mason jars (or mugs)
  • Cover and let sit overnight
  • Microwave for 60 seconds and ENJOY!

 

Brussels sprouts and sweet potato skillet 

Ingredients:

  • 8 thinly sliced brussels sprouts
  • Olive oil
  • 1/2 medium sweet potato diced small
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup chopped mushrooms (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chopped peppers (optional)
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2-4 eggs
  • Salt & pepper for seasoning

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Heat a skillet over medium heat thinly covering the bottom with olive oil
  • Add brussels sprouts. Let them cook on each side until golden brown (2-3 minutes)
  • Remove the brussels sprouts from the pan and set aside
  • Re-coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil
  • Add sweet potatoes and let them cook for 5-10 minutes
  • Add the mushrooms and peppers if you choose
  • Stir in a splash of balsamic vinegar and add the garlic
  • Add 1/4 cup of water to the pan and place it in the oven until the potatoes are done cooking (10-15 minutes)
  • Remove from the oven
  • Toss brussels sprouts on top
  • In a separate pan, cook your eggs to your liking (HAWA loves sunny side up)
  • ENJOY!

For more healthy breakfast ideas visit our “Jump Start Your Day With Breakfast” board on Pinterest:

http://www.pinterest.com/HealthAsWeAge/jump-start-your-day-with-breakfast/

Ready To Break Your Bad Habits?

5 Jul

stairs

Are you having a difficult time breaking your bad habits? Try making small changes throughout the day to reach your larger goals! Doctors say it takes around 21 days to form a new habit, why not start today?

  1. Get Quality Sleep: Failing to get enough sleep, or sleeping at odd hours heightens the risk for various major illnesses; cancer, heart disease, obesity and also causes increased production of stress hormones and increased blood pressure. Do you get enough sleep?
  2. Take The Stairs: Take the stairs instead of using the elevator. A 150 pound adult will burn roughly 20 calories walking up one flight of stairs. You can do the math for how many calories you can burn each day by ditching the elevator! 
  3. Walk Around: Researchers have linked long periods of sitting time with a number of health concerns such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, increased blood pressure, excess body fat, abnormal cholesterol levels and cardiovascular disease. Get up and get moving! 
  4. More Physical Activity: Incorporate some physical activity throughout the entire day. Try riding your bike or walk with a friend during your lunch break. Where in your day can you squeeze in a little workout? Visit our Pinterest page for some innovative office workouts! 

July’s Healthy Habit Challenge

1 Jul

kickbadhabits_doughnuts

Welcome to July’s Healthy Habit Challenge!

This months challenge is all about breaking your bad habits and replacing them with new healthy habits. Some Members tell us that they have a bad habit of consuming too much sugar, not getting enough sleep and consuming too much caffeine to stay alert during the work day. What’s your bad habit? Focus on one bad habit at a time and determine a replacement healthy habit that you are willing to work on. We want to help you achieve your goals, both big and small. Let’s start making small changes throughout your day and before long your new healthy habits will be routine for you.
Schedule a consultation with a HAWA Provider to work with you on your goals and create a plan of action to achieve them. Also, take a look at our Pinterest Page to help break some of your bad habits: http://www.pinterest.com/HealthAsWeAge
For our Members that Tweet, follow us @HAWAsupport and tell us what bad habits you are breaking this month and we will encourage you all month long!
HAWA U will also support you throughout the month with new articles to inspire you to make healthy habit changes.